Brown blob? It’s a work of art!
I’m a little lost’ said the voice on the telephone. ‘Can you give me a clue to your whereabouts?’ I asked. ‘Near a mini roundabout with a brown blob on it’ he said. ‘To you that might be merely a brown blob’, I told him sternly ‘but to us it is a highly priced and (to our council a greatly prized) piece of sculpture, specially commissioned to celebrate Ashford’s engineering heritage with particular regard to our history as a railway town’. ‘Oh’ came the reply. The speaker was, I assumed, so impressed that words failed him. When he finally found his voice his oration was marvellously graphic and commendably eloquent. It was though, I regret to say, unsuitable for publication in this respectable organ. The gist of it was that he was not entirely convinced that the council had spent our money wisely. It’s a sad thing, isn’t it, that we shall be seeing increasing numbers of gun-toting police persons openly patrolling public areas. For as long as I can remember, it has been the proud boast that British policemen, unlike their American counterparts, carried no firearms in the normal course of things unless there was clear and immediate danger to the public. But the world changes and we have all become so accustomed to reports of extreme violence that we shall doubtless become equally accustomed to the sight of armed officers of the law wherever we go. Let’s hope that the training and self-discipline of our chaps will never allow things to descend to the American level where, it seems, sometimes the refusal to stop running is given as sufficient cause for the use of deadly force. We really don’t want our cities and towns to become the kinds of battlegrounds that computer games portray. Such games have been shown inevitably to desensitize those who play them and, it is sometimes claimed, actually to contribute to violent behaviour. The larger such venues as the Designer Outlet become, the more likely they are to attract terrorist activity.